Health Hero Helen Subelbia
Because of her family history, Helen Subelbia has known for some time she was at risk for developing type 2 diabetes. But having been engaged in healthy activities most of her life the long-time DNRP employee assumed her health was fine; she became absorbed instead with work, family life (husband, two children) and a busy volunteer schedule.
"It finally hit home in January of 2008 when I went to my doctor and we had a talk about my family history and diabetes. I was 40 pounds overweight and getting concerned."
Healthy IncentivesSM played an important role as Helen worked with her health coach to map out an action plan. "My coach really laid out what a future with diabetes would mean, and talked to me about weight loss and physical activity. Everything she said made sense!"
Helen checked out King County’s Gym Discount Program and soon discovered a new exercise passion: aerobic kickboxing. She also replaced her all-day coffee habit with healthy snacking and regular meals.
As of this writing, Helen has lost those 40 pounds and says she has never been healthier. “I work out at the gym everyday except Saturday, and only because there’s no class that day. My health coach really got behind my progress. It was exciting to get that kind of support, right when I needed it.”
Helen's family and friends have followed her lead. Her daughter now goes to the gym regularly. Her son plays basketball and her husband walks. At work Helen’s manager says she is more energetic and even more focused than before.
Helen's advice for those looking to change, especially mothers: "King County offers so many options to help you get healthy. Take advantage of them. And remember to begin by including yourself on that list of the top three priorities in your life."